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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

District of North Dakota

For Immediate Release

July 30, 2012

Timothy Q. Purdon, United States Attorney

Contact: Beth Lang
(701) 530-2420

Fifteen-Year Sentence for Possession of Firearm & Ammunition by a Convicted Felon

BISMARCK – U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on July 30, 2012, Arthur D. Smith, 30, of Minot, N.D., was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Daniel L. Hovland on a charge of possession of firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon. Smith pleaded guilty to the charge on April 24, 2012.

Judge Hovland sentenced Smith to serve 15 years in federal prison, to be followed by two years of supervised release. Smith was ordered to pay a $100 special assessment to the Crime Victim's Fund.

During the early morning hours of December 7, 2011, the Ward County Sheriff's Office responded to a report of a vehicle setting on the road running for more than 30 minutes on Highway 2, just east of Minot, N.D. Upon arrival, officers saw an individual, identified as Smith, asleep in the driver's seat. Officers also observed a handgun setting on the front passenger seat. Smith was the only person in the vehicle.

Smith was prohibited from possessing either a firearm or ammunition by virtue of his previous convictions for accomplice to terrorizing, Ward County, N.D., in 2003; aggravated assault, Ward County, N.D., in 2006; and burglary, Ward County, N.D., in 2008.

The case was investigated by the ATF and the Ward County Sheriff's Office.

Assistant U.S. Attorney David Hagler prosecuted the case.